Thursday, September 12, 2013


Interesting how deep one can go. Here's a link in Wikipedia about Telsiai:  Telsiai

Come and Go

I have not been doing much research over this past summer of 2013. I'm saving all my research time to spend indoors this winter! I hibernate in the winter, only going out when necessary. A nice time of year to tuck in and do some serious looking around the family tree.

Lithuania 1891

I've been researching Lithuania to find out who was ruling in 1891, the year my maternal grandfather was born. I found this link in Wikipedia Lithuania in 1891 and found this map:
My maternal grandfather - and I believe his wife, my maternal grandmother, were from Luoke in Telsiai. Now I know how to find birth records? Not sure. Anyway it was interesting to learn.

Sunday, May 5, 2013

Trip To Lithuania

I'm thinking about taking a trip to Lithuania, but not this year. I'm thinking either 2014 or 2015. But I've already started looking around this wonderful web to do some basic research. There are a few travel shows I enjoy on the telly and one is Rick Steves' Europe. Here's a link to his site:

Rick Steves Europe

I've been trying to figure out what region Lithuania is part of. I found out on Rick Steves site it is considered a Baltic State, but only three countries make up the Baltic states - Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania. There is a generic Wikipedia article on the Baltic states here:

Baltic States

Whilst browsing around Rick Steves site I found reference to the In Your Pocket travel website and found a great resource for Lithuania here:

Lithuania Travel Guide In Your Pocket

Happy to be thinking about overseas travel. Even if I'm just an armchair traveler for now!

Sunday, March 31, 2013

How To Get Information From Family Members

I have a big sister. She's got lots of photos from our mother's family. I'm having a hard time getting my big sis to let me look at them. Every time I ask, she has some reason why she can't show them to me: I can't find them; Oh they're just pictures; I don't know anyone in the photos; you name it - she comes up with an excuse. Now I realize she has been the keeper of the family heirlooms for a lot longer than I've been. But even if she doesn't know who's in the pictures, I would love to see them and scan them in. I'd love to start an online library of these pictures. One of the reasons I've posted my blogs online is to catch someone else maybe doing research on the same families. Maybe someone out here, trolling for information, might stumble upon my blog and recognize some of these photos. From what I can tell, they are all photos of either dead relatives, or photos of distant cousins as babies and kids. Well, I'll keep at it. Maybe my big sis will get tired of me asking and just let me see them and scan them in. I keep hoping!

Genealogy Communities

I've been looking around Google searching for places to get advice on starting my genealogy research. I have to say, the Google+ Communities is a fantastic "one stop shop" for finding the tools to do the research.

However, I hit gold over the past few days. I discovered a Yahoo Group that has been online since online began. And it is strictly devoted to all things Lithuania, especially genealogy research. Here is a link:

According to the front page of this group, it has been up and running since 1999. Their resources are amazing and they post everything to share. Members also share their research. The  moderators are very helpful and patient, especially dealing with newbies like me!

Thursday, January 24, 2013

Where It All Began?

I believe my maternal grandparents were both from the same village in Lithuania:
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Luokė, Telšiai County, Lithuania

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My Maternal Grandfather

Martinkus was my maternal grandfather's name. His draft card states that he was born in Luoke, Telsiai in Lithuania.

My Maternal Grandmother

So as a companion site to my other genealogy research site, I am starting this site. I believe my maternal grandmother's maiden name is Sauka, from Lithuania. It will be interesting to see if this blogging mines any useful tips or hints on my research. Ready-set-go!

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Where It All Opened Up

In my browsing around the Ancestry website, and whilst trying out different variations of the last name MARTINKUS, I found this WW II draft card. It gave me the clearest and best clue to my research yet.

Variations On A Name

I began a membership at Ancestry to start my basic research. I've found some records there, such as Federal census records and even local city directories. Now I know names were changed in translation from the original spelling to become Americanized. What I wasn't prepared for was just HOW MANY variations I would find. Even talking with my sisters, their memories of how the original family name was spelled is different. Here are just a few of the various spellings I've found: Martinhus (the original K transcribed to an H), Martinkos (the original U transcribed to an O) and so on. This makes it very difficult to search for local state and federal records. What a task!

Beginning The Journey

I am publishing this blog to begin the journey of discovery into my Lithuanian family tree. It's a long story on how I only just began this journey, but it is the start. If anyone is doing genealogical research on the Martinkus family name, leave a message and let's talk. Start out by reaching out. Wish me luck!